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Film / The Snapper

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The Snapper is an Irish film based on the book of the same name. When Sharon Curley finds herself pregnant with the titular snapper (Dublin slang for baby), her life and the life of her immediate family is set to change forever.

Things get complicated when the father of the baby turns out to be George Burgess, the father of her friend and neighbour (possibly by rape). Of course, she denies this, claiming that the father is an unknown Spanish sailor. However, she ends up a pariah around her hometown over it.

The film is a huge Cult Classic in Ireland that has been subject to much Memetic Mutation. Even two decades after its release, it's still oft-quoted.


This Movie Shows Examples Of:

  • Adapted Out: In the book, the 13-year-old Lisa has a twin sister named Tracy who twirls a baton in a majorette uniform.
  • Adaptation Name Change:
    • In the original novel the matriarch's name was Veronica; in the movie, it's changed to Kay.
    • The father's name is Jimmy Sr. in the novel but it's changed to Dessie.
    • Same with Jimmy Jr., the second-oldest son's name is changed to Sonny.
    • The entire family is given the surname Curley, due to a rights issue over the Rabbitte name.
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Most of Sharon's younger siblings might come off as this, in the movie's opening scene Sharon's brother Sonny and younger sister Lisa argue as Sharon discovers that she's pregnant.
  • Captain Ersatz: In the original book, the family was the Rabbitte family from The Commitments. Due to a rights issue, the name of the family was changed to Curley. Interestingly enough, the third book in the trilogy, The Van would do this again with the father of the family again played by Colm Meaney, making him a Captain Ersatz of a Captain Ersatz.
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  • Child by Rape: George Burgess is implied to have taken advantage of Sharon while she was drunk.
  • Convenience Store Gift Shopping: Subverted. Darren wants a bicycle for his birthday. Des presents him with a bicycle pump, claiming he'll buy him the bike in pieces. He reveals that he's only joking and presents Darren with an old fifties-style bicycle with a basket on the front and reveals that he's joking again before presenting a brand new bike.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: The movie's dialogue is riddled with four-letter words.
  • Dashing Hispanic: The mythical "Spanish Sailor" that Sharon claims is the father.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Pretty much everybody.
  • Dirty Old Man: George Burgess takes advantage of Sharon when she's drunk, having sex with her on the bonnet of a car. He even keeps her underwear, even claiming that he was going to show them to his friends.
  • Dublin Skanger: Sharon displays a bit of this trope, as she still finds time to go clubbing. She's portrayed more positively than usual male examples because of her independence.
  • Fake Shemp: The film's poster goes the Plan 9 from Outer Space route by covering up most of the face of a girl who barely even slightly resembles Tina Kellegher with a sheet. Even more bizarrely, Kellegher herself appears in a small inset photo at the bottom of the poster with the rest of the cast.
  • Gossipy Hens/Malicious Slander: The neighbors, her best friend turned ex-best friend Yvonne and even strangers subject Sharon and the rest of her family to cruel rumors and hurtful Slut-Shaming especially after it's discovered that her friend's own father George Burgess impregnated her.
  • Groin Attack: Threatened. Dessie threatens to cut Burgess' testicles off with a pair of gardening shears.
  • Hard-Drinking Party Girl: Even while heavily pregnant, Sharon takes the time to get pissed and go clubbing.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: After Sharon tells Dessie and Kay about her pregnancy, Dessie decides to slip down to the pub.
  • Large Ham: Dessie manages to combine this with Deadpan Snarker.
  • Mama Bear/Papa Wolf/Big Brother Instinct: All of Sharon's immediate family have elements of this. Kay slaps Mrs. Burgess when she accuses Sharon of being a slut, Craig starts breaking the windows of the Burgess house and Dessie rallies around Sharon like no other, even threatening to castrate Burgess with a pair of gardening shears. Even her younger sister starts beating up the local boys when they start making fun of Sharon's situation.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: Sharon's the oldest of six siblings.
  • Oh, Crap!: Sharon's reaction when she finds out that her father has discovered that she is pregnant by Burgess.
  • Parental Fashion Veto/Age-Inappropriate Dress: Lisa, who is presumably 13-14 wears a short dress complete with make-up and Madonna-like jewelry which understandably appalls Dessie.
  • Slut-Shaming: Sharon is treated abysmally by the townsfolk of Barrytown when it emerges that Burgess may or may not be the father.
    Random teenager: How's Mr. Burgess!
    Preteen Girl: Slut!
  • Teen Pregnancy: Subverted. Des tells Sharon that, at nineteen, she's too young to have a baby. Sharon corrects him, stating that she's actually twenty.
  • Too Dumb to Live: The kids seem to constantly be playing with the electrical sockets in the kitchen.
  • Weapon for Intimidation: When Craig was serving in Lebanon, he was apparently given a gun with no ammunition, so he had to stare down the Arabs really hard.


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